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Bill Downs
Bill Downs is an expert on diet and digestion.
Bill is the author of the Trafon (spell it backwards) blog

Bill has unsurpassed knowledge of how nutrients help the body heal. Involved with nutritional information for over 20 years, Bill has lectured worldwide, is a published author, and has penned a number of papers in cited peer-reviewed scientific journals. A recognized expert in his field , Bill has had over 75 TV , Radio and Newspaper interviews. Bill's five years of post-graduate education in Nutrition Science and Biological Chemistry along with his years of clinical experience as a nutrition consultant have given him great insight into the modern human condition, the needless suffering of people, and a profound appreciation for the body's miraculous capabilities to heal itself when properly supported by nutrition.

In The News

World Health Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations states; probiotics are "live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host".

"In conclusion, probiotics act as an adjuvant in the prevention and treatment of a wide variety of chronic diseases" (from a paper presented by Broekaert and Walker of Harvard Medical School , Mucosal Immunology Laboratory, Massachusetts General Hospital for Children

Elderly people should take probiotic supplements, according to scientists.

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Though the dietary consumption of probiotic containing fermented foods has occurred throughout history , the original observation of the positive role played by some selected bacteria is attributed to Eli Metchnikoff, the Russian born Nobel Prize recipient working at the Pasteur Institute at the beginning of the last century, who suggested in 1907 , that "The dependence of the intestinal microbes on the food makes it possible to adopt measures to modify the flora in our bodies and to replace the harmful microbes by useful microbes". Research into the health related benefits of "good bacteria" continued thoughout the 20th century , mainly in the European nations. In the beginning of the 21st century , 2001 , a joint Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and World Health Organization (FAO/WHO) "Expert Consultation on Evaluation of Health and Nutritional Properties of Probiotics" occurred culminating in a report that , among other things , redefined the use of the word probiotic as "Live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host" and listed (below) potential health applications of probiotics as well as concluded that "health benefits for which probiotics can be applied include conditions such as gastrointestinal infections, certain bowel disorders, allergy, and urogenital infections". This international group of experts also concluded that , "In addition, there is emerging evidence to indicate that probiotics can be taken by otherwise healthy people as a means to prevent certain diseases and modulate host immunity".

Use of a probiotic and/or enzyme dietary supplement , such as Trafon OneAmeal™ , has been either clinically shown ,or results indicate, to be effective in the prevention and treatment of many ailments such as those listed below. "The concept of probiotic therapy is familiar to many consumers and although it has historically lacked credibility in the medical community, perceptions are changing." (Reid et al., 2004).

(Floch et al., 2006); (Doron et al., 2006); (Parvez et al., 2006); (Heczko et al., 2005); (Chermesh et al., 2005); (Besselink et al., 2005); (Chen et al., 2005); (Meier et al., 2005); (Ogden et al., 2005); (Caramia 2004); (Tlaskalova-Hogenova et al., 2004); (Guarner et al., 2003);

Whether you are over 60 years old , recovering from antibiotic therapy , looking to alleviate/prevent a disease or just interested in obtaining and maintaing overall good health ; a dietary probiotic and enzyme supplement such as Trafon OneAmeal™ will be beneficial. "In conclusion, probiotics act as an adjuvant in the prevention and treatment of a wide variety of chronic diseases" (from a paper presented by Broekaert and Walker of Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02129, USA. , Mucosal Immunology Laboratory, Massachusetts General Hospital for Children (Broekaert et al., 2006)).

Acid Reflux - GERD (GastroEsophageal Reflux Disease)


Cardiovascular disease

Colorectal Cancer



Helicobacter pylori

Hypertension - High Blood Pressure

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

Immune Function

Intestinal Gas - Belching, Bloating and Flatulence

Intestinal Transit

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Lactose Intolerance

Urogenital tract disorders

Bacterial vaginosis

Yeast vaginitis

Urinary tract infections

Use of probiotics in otherwise healthy people

Clinical Studies
Below are some abstracts of referenced clinical studies from the PubMed site , a service of the Unite States National Library of Medicine and the National Institute of Health.

Recommendations for Probiotic Use

Floch MH, Madsen KK, Jenkins DJ, Guandalini S, Katz JA, Onderdonk A, Walker WA, Fedorak RN, Camilleri M.
Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520-8019, USA. martin.floch@yale.edu

Probiotics are live microbial organisms that are administrated as supplements or in foods to benefit the host. It is the recommendation that they may be helpful in the prevention and treatment of acute diarrhea in adults and children, the prevention of antibiotic-associated diarrhea in adults and children , and the maintenance of remission and prevention of pouchitis. Although early results indicate that probiotics may also be useful in immunologic modulation to prevent atopy, treatment of radiation intestinal disease, vaginosis, ulcerative colitis, and the irritable bowel syndrome, the studies available are not sufficient to say they are definitely helpful. Even fewer data are available to recommend probiotics for the treatment of H pylori and Crohn disease and for the prevention of cardiovascular risk factors or other degenerative diseases. Clearly, larger and better-designed studies of probiotics are necessary, including comparative and dose-ranging trials.

Probiotics and Their Fermented Food Products Are Beneficial For Health

Parvez S, Malik KA, Ah Kang S, Kim HY.
Helix Pharms Co. Ltd, Kyung-Hee University, and Department of Biological Sciences of Oriental Medicine, Graduate School of Interdepartmental Studies, Institute of Oriental Medicines, Kyung-Hee University, Dongdaemoon-gu, Seoul, Korea.

Probiotics are usually defined as microbial food supplements with beneficial effects on the consumers. Most probiotics fall into the group of organisms' known as lactic acid-producing bacteria and are normally consumed in the form of yogurt, fermented milks or other fermented foods. Some of the beneficial effect of lactic acid bacteria consumption include: (i) improving intestinal tract health; (ii) enhancing the immune system, synthesizing and enhancing the bioavailability of nutrients; (iii) reducing symptoms of lactose intolerance, decreasing the prevalence of allergy in susceptible individuals; and (iv) reducing risk of certain cancers. The mechanisms by which probiotics exert their effects are largely unknown, but may involve modifying gut pH, antagonizing pathogens through production of antimicrobial compounds, competing for pathogen binding and receptor sites as well as for available nutrients and growth factors, stimulating immunomodulatory cells, and producing lactase. Selection criteria, efficacy, food and supplement sources and safety issues around probiotics are reviewed. Recent scientific investigation has supported the important role of probiotics as a part of a healthy diet for human as well as for animals and may be an avenue to provide a safe, cost effective, and 'natural' approach that adds a barrier against microbial infection. This paper presents a review of probiotics in health maintenance and disease prevention.

Probiotics and Chronic Disease

Broekaert IJ, Walker WA.
Mucosal Immunology Laboratory, Massachusetts General Hospital for Children, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02129, USA.

In today's climate, changed lifestyles and the increased use of antibiotics are significant factors that affect the preservation of a healthy intestinal microflora. The concept of probiotics is to restore and maintain a microflora advantageous to the human body. Probiotics are found in a number of fermented dairy products, infant formula, and dietary supplements. Basic research on probiotics has suggested several modes of action beneficial for the human body and clinical research has proven its preventive and curative features in different intestinal and extraintestinal diseases. Chronic diseases cause considerable disablement in patients and represent a substantial economic burden on healthcare resources. Research has demonstrated a crucial role of nutrition in the prevention of chronic disease. Thus, positive, strain-specific effects of probiotics have been shown in diarrheal diseases, inflammatory bowel diseases, irritable bowel syndrome, and Helicobacter pylori-induced gastritis, and in atopic diseases and in the prevention of cancer. As the majority of probiotics naturally inhabit the human intestinal microflora, their use has been regarded as very safe. However, in view of the range of potential benefits on health that might be achieved by the use of some probiotic bacteria, major and thorough evaluation is still necessary. In conclusion, probiotics act as an adjuvant in the prevention and treatment of a wide variety of chronic diseases. Return

Probiotics: Their Role in the Treatment and Prevention of Disease

Doron S, Gorbach SL.
Division of Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases, Tufts-New England Medical Center, Boston, MA 02111, USA. sdoron@tufts-nemc.org

A probiotic is a "live microbial food ingredients that, when ingested in sufficient quantities, exerts health benefits on the consumer". Probiotics exert their benefits through several mechanisms; they prevent colonization, cellular adhesion and invasion by pathogenic organisms, they have direct antimicrobial activity and they modulate the host immune response. The strongest evidence for the clinical effectiveness of probiotics has been in their use for the prevention of symptoms of lactose intolerance, treatment of acute diarrhea, attenuation of antibiotic-associated gastrointestinal side effects and the prevention and treatment of allergy manifestations. More research needs to be carried out to clarify conflicting findings on the use of probiotics for prevention of travelers' diarrhea, infections in children in daycare and dental caries, and elimination of nasal colonization with potentially pathogenic bacteria. Promising ongoing research is being conducted on the use of probiotics for the treatment of Clostridium difficile colitis, treatment of Helicobacter pylori infection, treatment of inflammatory bowel disease and prevention of relapse, treatment of irritable bowel syndrome, treatment of intestinal inflammation in cystic fibrosis patients, and prevention of necrotizing enterocolitis in premature infants. Finally, areas of future research include the use of probiotics for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, prevention of cancer and the treatment of graft-versus-host disease in bone marrow transplant recipients. Return

Medical Applications of Probiotics

Heczko PB, Strus M, Jawien M, Szymanski H.
Katedry Mikrobiologii Collegium Medicum Uniwersytetu Jagielloiiskiego w Krakowie. mbheczko@cyf-kr.edu.pl

Normal microflora of the digestive tract plays an important role in maintaining competence of the immune system. Imbalance of the flora may lead to the development of either diseases related to overgrowth of its selected constituents (post-antibiotic diarrhoea, travellers' diarrhoea or infection by external pathogens--rotavirus diarrhoea) or diseases resulting from altered immunological response (atopy, inflammatory bowel disease, neoplasmas). It is believed that application of probiotics may restore proper composition and functions of the microflora and thus bring new perspectives into prevention and treatment of these illnesses. Prospective studies on mechanisms of the probiotic activities may enable their new medical applications. Return

Probiotics and the Gastrointestinal Tract: Where Are We in 2005?

Chermesh I, Eliakim R.
Gastroenterology Department, Rambam Medical Center, P.O.B 9602, Haifa 31096, Israel.

Probiotic agents are live microbes or components of microbes that have a positive effect on the host. They exert their action through interplay with the immune system of the host. Some of this effect is local and some is systemic. The full story is yet to be discovered. Probiotics have a definite positive effect on rotavirus diarrhea, post antibiotic diarrhea and pouchitis. Their exact role in inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, other forms of infectious diarrhea, and prevention of cancer is yet to be determined. This review summarizes the data about probiotics in these conditions. Return

Prevention of Infectious Complications in Surgical Patients: Potential Role of Probiotics

Besselink MG, Timmerman HM, van Minnen LP, Akkermans LM, Gooszen HG.
Department of Surgery, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Infectious complications in surgical patients often originate from the intestinal microflora. In the critically ill patient, small bowel motility is disturbed, leading to bacterial overgrowth and subsequent bacterial translocation due to dysfunction of the gut mucosal barrier. The optimal prophylactic strategy should act on all these factors, but such a strategy is not yet available. For several decades, antibiotic prophylaxis to prevent translocation of pathogenic bacteria has been studied with conflicting results. Selective decontamination of the digestive tract has shown good results, but fear for bacterial multiresistance has prevented worldwide implementation. In recent years, probiotics, living bacteria with a potential beneficial effect to their host, have shown promising results in several randomized placebo-controlled trials. Currently, in vitro and experimental research focuses on the effects of probiotics on the microflora responsible for gut-derived infections, structural mucosal barrier function and the immune system. Copyright (c) 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel. Return

Probiotics and Prebiotics: Role in Clinical Disease States

Chen CC, Walker WA.
Chang Gung University and Chang Gung Children's Hospital, Taoyuan, Taiwan.

Parents of pediatric patients are seeking alternatives to conventional therapy in the prevention and treatment of gastrointestinal disease states because of therapeutic failures caused by the increased incidence of antibiotic resistance. One such alternative is the use of probiotics and prebiotics to stimulate health-promoting indigenous flora to affect pathogen colonization and expression of disease. Probiotics are live flora given in oral quantities that allow for colonization of the colon. Probiotics are given as functional foods or dietary supplements, and function to activate the mucosal immune system and prevent pathogen colonization and translocation by strengthening the mucosal barrier, interfering with pathogen colonization, and in some instances, producing secretory antibacterial substances. Prebiotics are nondigestible carbohydrates, principally oligosoccharides, that are fermented by colonic commensals, stimulating their proliferation and producing short-chain fatty acids. Both protective nutrients have been shown to reduce the incidence and severity of infantile diarrhea, particularly rotaviral gastroenteritis, prevent antibiotic-induced diarrhea, and prevent and treat intestinal food allergy. With additional multicenter clinical trial confirmations, these substances may become routine in the care of infants and young children. Return

Place of Probiotics

Meier R, Steuerwald M.
Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, University of Basel, Liestal, Switzerland. remy.meier@ksli.ch

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: This review reports on the recent progress understanding mechanisms of action and clinical applications of probiotics. RECENT FINDINGS: New insights on regulating mechanisms of intestinal commensal bacteria to prevent and treat different gastrointestinal diseases have been reported. Some probiotics, though not all, exert beneficial effects by modulating the mucosal barrier function and immune activity. It seems that a combination of different probiotics is more effective than a single strain. It was demonstrated that not only viable bacteria administered to the intestinal tract but also isolated probiotic DNA is active, even if injected subcutaneously. There is reasonable evidence to recommend probiotics in infectious diarrhoea for prevention and treatment (mainly in children) and to prevent antibiotic-induced gastrointestinal side effects. Furthermore, probiotics are effective in maintaining remission in ulcerative colitis and preventing and treating pouchitis. Promising positive effects were published in major surgery patients (gastric resection, pancreatic resection, liver transplantation) and in severe necrotising acute pancreatitis. SUMMARY: Increasing knowledge on probiotics is exciting, but in the near future it must be defined which probiotics (single strains or a combination) are most effective in specific diseases. Well-designed, randomized clinical trials are still required to further define the role of probiotics as preventive and therapeutic agents. Return

Probiotics: A Complementary Approach in the Treatment and Prevention of Pediatric Atopic Disease

Ogden NS, Bielory L.
Department of Allergy, Immunology and Rheumatology, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, New Jersey Medical School, Newark, NJ 07081, USA.

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The goal of this article is to review recent primary research and developments in the area of probiotics and pediatric atopic disease. RECENT FINDINGS: Research developments in probiotics summarized in this article include the following: (1) the role of probiotics in primary prevention of atopic disease, (2) the effect of probiotics on cytokines involved in the allergic immune response, (3) the long-term effects of peri-natal probiotic use and (4) the relationship between the gut microflora and atopic dermatitis. SUMMARY: Probiotics continue to be an area of active investigation as our understanding evolves of the gut microbiota's role in the altered immune response of atopic patients. Physicians should be aware of these developments as probiotics may be an important complementary approach in the treatment and the natural and long-term course of various pediatric diseases. This article summarizes the research conducted over the past 10 years with a primary focus on the literature published since January 2003. Return

Probiotics: From Metchnikoff to the Current Preventive and Therapeutic Possibilities

Caramia G.
Primario Emerito di Pediatria e Neonatologia, Azienda Ospedaliera Materno-Infantile G. Salesi, Ancona. caramiagm@libero.it

About a century ago, Metchnikoff first hypothesised that some intestinal bacteria "produce compounds useful against a premature ageing". Since then, studies progressed over last century, leading to a remarkable improvement of the knowledge about the role of intestinal micro-organisms. Nowadays a number of different micro-organisms satisfying certain requisites are named probiotics and are produced on a large scale. At present, a rational use of probiotics with preventive and therapeutic purposes has been proposed not only for some gastrointestinal pathologies, such as the infective diarrhea (as recommended by the Italian Society of Pediatric, the Italian Society of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, the Italian Society of Pediatric Infectious Disease, and by International Societies), but also for other pathologic conditions, such as the atopic dermatitis and related affections (as suggested by the American Academy of Dermatology Association guide lines). Moreover, the use of probiotics is going to be extended to other pathologies, such as the inflammatory intestinal and respiratory diseases, and even to the prevention of tooth decay, although the actual preventive and therapeutic effects of probiotics onto these pathologies have to be carefully investigated. It is unknown if the genius Leonardo Da Vinci (1452-1519), stating that "man's life is built up by food" imagined how nutrients can influence human health, besides being essential for life, as it is today increasingly evident. Avoiding an excessive optimism and the thought that an efficacious panacea for all troubles has been found, there are sound reasons to believe that probiotics, and prebiotics as well, can influence human health, through the prevention and therapy of many diseases, although further studies are still requested to fully clarify the mechanisms of action of these micro-organisms on each pathology. Return

The Rationale for Probiotics in Female Urogenital Healthcare

Reid G, Burton J, Devillard E.
Department of Microbiology & Immunology, and Surgery, The University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada.

Urogenital infections are a major reason that women visit their family physician and are referred to gastroenterology, gynecology, urology, and infectious disease specialists. The association between abnormal vaginal microbiota and increased risk for sexually transmitted infections, bladder and vaginal infections per se, and a higher rate of preterm labor indicate the need to better understand and manage urogenital health. The concept of probiotics arose from the realization that humans are inhabited with microbes from birth and that these organisms play a role in preventing disease. Defined as "live microorganisms, which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host," probiotic strains have already been shown to effectively prevent diarrhea and to hold potential in preventing and treating tonsillitis, caries, renal calculi, and respiratory infections. This review provides a rationale for the use of probiotics in maintaining female vaginal and bladder health and as a treatment option for recurrent bacterial vaginosis, urinary tract infection, yeast vaginitis, and sexually transmitted infections. We consider only probiotic strains that fulfill the United Nations/World Health Organization Guidelines for Probiotics in being fully characterized and clinically documented through scientific investigations describing known or presumed mechanisms of action. Although medical practitioners as yet are unable to access these probiotic strains, an awareness of recent and ongoing research for probiotics is important, as results are encouraging. The concept of probiotic therapy is familiar to many consumers and although it has historically lacked credibility in the medical community, perceptions are changing. Return

Commensal Bacteria ( Normal Microflora ), Mucosal Immunity and Chronic Inflammatory and Autoimmune Diseases

Tlaskalova-Hogenova H, Stepankova R, Hudcovic T, Tuckova L, Cukrowska B, Lodinova-Zadnikova R, Kozakova H, Rossmann P, Bartova J, Sokol D, Funda DP, Borovska D, Rehakova Z, Sinkora J, Hofman J, Drastich P, Kokesova A.
Department of Immunology and Gnotobiology, Institute of Microbiology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Videnska 1083, 142 20 Prague 4, Czech Republic. tlaskalo@biomed.cas.cz

Commensal microflora (normal microflora, indigenous microbiota) consists of those micro-organisms, which are present on body surfaces covered by epithelial cells and are exposed to the external environment (gastrointestinal and respiratory tract, vagina, skin, etc.). The number of bacteria colonising mucosal and skin surfaces exceeds the number of cells forming human body. Commensal bacteria co-evolved with their hosts, however, under specific conditions they are able to overcome protective host responses and exert pathologic effects. Resident bacteria form complex ecosystems, whose diversity is enormous. The most abundant microflora is present in the distal parts of the gut; the majority of the intestinal bacteria are Gram-negative anaerobes. More than 50% of intestinal bacteria cannot be cultured by conventional microbiological techniques. Molecular biological methods help in analysing the structural and functional complexity of the microflora and in identifying its components. Resident microflora contains a number of components able to activate innate and adaptive immunity. Unlimited immune activation in response to signals from commensal bacteria could pose the risk of inflammation; immune responses to mucosal microbiota therefore require a precise regulatory control. The mucosal immune system has developed specialised regulatory, anti-inflammatory mechanisms for eliminating or tolerating non-dangerous, food and airborne antigens and commensal micro-organisms (oral, mucosal tolerance). However, at the same time the mucosal immune system must provide local defense mechanisms against environmental threats (e.g. invading pathogens). This important requirement is fulfilled by several mechanisms of mucosal immunity: strongly developed innate defense mechanisms ensuring appropriate function of the mucosal barrier, existence of unique types of lymphocytes and their products, transport of polymeric immunoglobulins through epithelial cells into secretions (sIgA) and migration and homing of cells originating from the mucosal organised tissues in mucosae and exocrine glands. The important role of commensal bacteria in development of optimally functioning mucosal immune system was demonstrated in germ-free animals (using gnotobiological techniques). Involvement of commensal microflora and its components with strong immunoactivating properties (e.g. LPS, peptidoglycans, superantigens, bacterial DNA, Hsp) in etiopathogenetic mechanism of various complex, multifactorial and multigenic diseases, including inflammatory bowel diseases, periodontal disease, rheumatoid arthritis, atherosclerosis, allergy, multiorgan failure, colon cancer has been recently suggested. Animal models of human diseases reared in defined gnotobiotic conditions are helping to elucidate the aetiology of these frequent disorders. An improved understanding of commensal bacteria-host interactions employing germ-free animal models with selective colonisation strategies combined with modern molecular techniques could bring new insights into the mechanisms of mucosal immunity and also into pathogenetic mechanisms of several infectious, inflammatory, autoimmune and neoplastic diseases. Regulation of microflora composition (e.g. by probiotics and prebiotics) offers the possibility to influence the development of mucosal and systemic immunity but it can play a role also in prevention and treatment of some diseases. Return

Gut Flora in Health and Disease

Guarner F, Malagelada JR.
Digestive System Research Unit, Hospital General Vall d'Hebron, Barcelona, Spain. fguarnera@medynet.com

The human gut is the natural habitat for a large and dynamic bacterial community, but a substantial part of these bacterial populations are still to be described. However, the relevance and effect of resident bacteria on a host's physiology and pathology has been well documented. Major functions of the gut microflora include metabolic activities that result in salvage of energy and absorbable nutrients, important trophic effects on intestinal epithelia and on immune structure and function, and protection of the colonised host against invasion by alien microbes. Gut flora might also be an essential factor in certain pathological disorders, including multisystem organ failure, colon cancer, and inflammatory bowel diseases. Nevertheless, bacteria are also useful in promotion of human health. Probiotics and prebiotics are known to have a role in prevention or treatment of some diseases. Return

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Did You Know?

You carry around three pounds of bacteria (both "good" and "bad" types) in your intestines every day of your life.?

There are about 400 different species of bacteria residing in your digestive tract?

That these bacterium number in the trillions?

That PROBIOTICS (good bacterium) are an INTREGAL part of your digestive system and are ESSENTIAL for good health?

That the ratio of good bacteria to bad in a HEALTHY gastrointestinal tract is 85 percent versus 15 percent, respectively?

People over 60 have about 1,000-fold LESS "friendly" bacteria in their guts compared with other adults

That your diet, prescription drugs (especially antibiotics), stress, and illnesses, can kill your essential good bacteria?

That enzymes are present in every cell of your body?

That enzymes are NECESSARY to your food digestion, energy production, tissue and organ repair, and toxic waste removal?

That due to a nutrient depleted diet , most Americans lack sufficient types and quanities of CRITICAL to health levels of both enzymes and probiotics?

That Trafon OneAmeal™ contains the hightest premium quality strains of HEALTH promoting probiotics and enzymes CRITICALLY required by your body?
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